It was kismet when I first met and got to know Kristin Sinatra, and that warm feeling is reinforced every time I interact with her. She is a friend, respected colleague, highly regarded by peers, industry and community organizations, and on a personal note, she designed my 3 logos, and was a contributor of a case study in my latest book (which is coincidentally titled “You, Us, Them”). She shares openly and generously with me, for which I am thankful. I was very pleased she contributed this guest blog piece, for my, and for your benefit, to appreciate her wise viewpoint on this topic. I agree with her; be in charge of your present and future, because only you can do it! Thank you, Kristin, for your generosity, once again!
When someone tells you that “Everything happens for a reason,” do you smile and nod, feeling your heart warmed and future safeguarded in some way? Or do you wince and cringe in disagreement at their impossibly trite reasoning?
It’s a simple phrase to say – a failsafe explanation for the good, the bad, the ugly and very often for disappointment in life, like a failed opportunity, job or relationship.
We have to imagine that the millions of people who so naturally offer this explanation – especially to friends experiencing hardship or uncertainly – say it with sincerity. But why do they believe? What underlies their faith in this principle? Let’s take a step back and think about what these folks might really be trying to tell us – whether consciously or not.
Many believe the divine is at the heart of this principle, and that our lives are driven by a supernatural master plan – something bigger than ourselves. But it’s also possible to see ourselves as the driver behind the principle, fueled by a keen honing of classical conditioning, and a deeply personal collective of behaviors developed over a lifetime. Could it be that everything happens for a reason because our subconscious is at work in the best interest of our self-preservation? If so, does this principle lie within the micro-level of signals we emit to those around us, directly begetting the results and responses we receive?
There are those who attribute this principle to intuition, placing an emphasis on one’s “gut feelings” as signs from beyond. Most agree you should trust your gut, but some would clarify that intuition is really instinct fueled by experience and expertise.
If we are to believe in this principle for any of the above reasons, or others unnamed, perhaps the catalyst to its validity is *us*. We can’t deny that our present circumstance is a collective result of all the decisions we’ve made, the things we’ve learned, and every single event we’ve experienced. When we think about life in this way, suddenly a simple sounding principle holds a bit more water than chalking one’s future up to fate or luck.
If you believe in this principle, and/or in trusting one’s “gut,” one thing is undeniable: You are the curator and compass of “you.” The definition of “you” encompasses your belief system, your behaviors, your attitude, your outlook, your values – yourself.
So when it comes to your “gut reaction” to an unanticipated LinkedIn connection invitation, listen to it. Select “accept” or “reject” based on your instinct and intuition, because chances are they’re backed by something real. You might just be forming a new relationship “for a reason.” A connection to a connection to an opportunity that may very well happen. Make it happen. Make everything happen for a reason.
Kristin Sinatra serves as Vice President of Marketing for Waveny LifeCare Network – a large nonprofit continuum of eldercare in New Canaan, Connecticut, where she directs all aspects of Waveny’s marketing operations.
A seasoned marketer, graphic designer, creative director and writer, Ms. Sinatra’s work has been recognized nationally for representing best practices in social media, and she was honored to lecture at Google Headquarters in 2014 on the evolution of healthcare marketing strategies and tactics in a progressively digital world.
In Ms. Sinatra’s 15 years of service with the Waveny organization, she has steadily initiated and implemented a comprehensive and responsive multi-pronged marketing strategy, and led a full organizational rebrand in 2013.
A member of Phi Beta Kappa, Ms. Sinatra is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of the University of Connecticut.